Today I’m like a proud parent reviewing a C-plus report card: “look at all these good things you did, some of the time!” I mean, do you remember that first half***? No? Oh, ok, good—forget I said anything.
(***Not to sell the defense short here—they did an incredible job in that first half.)
If we’re lucky, then Thursday night was just the start of the Legend Of MJ Morris.
We can probably consider Morris’ redshirt burned at this point. He’s allowed to play in one more game and still retain it, but he also put a vice grip on the starting quarterback job with his performance in the second half yesterday, so I’m thinking the coaching staff will want to see him play more than one additional game this season.
Morris not only played well but he got everyone on the team to relax, which was nothing short of an apparent miracle at the time. NC State’s offense had gotten so far up its own ass by failing to score a touchdown for a game-and-a-half that little was inclined to work, even when the play calls were good. (Which they were most of the night.)
Explosive plays are important for a variety of reasons, one of those being that they are instant-Xanax for a bunch of jittery guys thinking about how they can’t screw up because they haven’t scored a touchdown in forever. Jack Chambers just could not deliver one of these plays; MJ Morris could, and the rest of Thursday night was history.
Morris’ first career touchdown pass was a dime down the field to Thayer Thomas—and a long pass play that brought the team back from the dead. Morris leaned on Thomas a lot, and Thomas was there to help every time.
From there the confidence grew all around. In the process, NC State came back from a three-score deficit to win and found its quarterback of the future.